Don't Sweat the Holiday Parties and Feasts!

Thursday, November 18, 2010 • Las Vegas, NV 89130

Here we are one week from Thanksgiving and then it is on into the month of December, where we celebrate numerous holidays and have many festivities to enjoy.

This is the time of year when worry begins to set in for many of you. You worry about throwing away all the hard work and accomplishes you have made through your fitness journey in the past year. You worry about whether you can be strong enough to not have a particular food or just be able to take one bite and move on.

I am here to tell you that you don't need to worry. Enjoy your holidays and stay on track. We all indulge during the holidays. The key is to do it in small doses and keep to your daily nutrition regimen and exercise routine on all the other days to make it through the holiday season.

Here are some steps to make it through different holiday festivities.

Big Holiday Meals:
1. Eat a good breakfast the morning of the big meal and the morning after. Never starve yourself the next day, thinking that it will help because you may have over indulged. Make your breakfast 300 to 400 calories that includes high-quality carbohydrates, low-fat dairy, and fruit. Some good suggests are yogurt with a low-sugar granola and berries or whole-grain toast with cottage cheese and fruit. If you meal is later in the day eat a good lunch as well.

2. Make sure you eat prior to going to your holiday feast so you are not hungry when you get there. This will prevent you from snacking to much on other things.

3. Drink a lot of water prior to the meal. This will make you feel full and prevent you from eating to much during the meal.

***The day after your big meal, do a long and slow cardio workout. This will help burn off the food you over consumed. Shoot for 600-800 calories, hike or jog, enjoy the view.

Holiday Deserts and Treats:
1.The biggest thing you can do is to just skip the sugar. They are the same as any other desert and treat and offer no nutritional value and a lot more processed ingredients.

2. If you just can't seem to keep yourself from wanting it, then either you or have someone else cut off a 2" x 2" piece and put it on your plate. Then when it is gone, it is gone and you are done.

***The next day do intervals are the best workout for getting rid of those sugary deserts. 30 seconds on and 1 minute off. Do 8-10 rotations of those after a 5-10 minute warm-up and then finish with a 5-10 minute cool-down.

Cocktail Parties:
1. Before the party be sure to eat a meal and drink plenty of water. This will make you full and you will not be able to consume as much.

2. Time your drinks. Make it so you are not allowed to have more than 1 drink within an hour.

3. Water Swap. For every cocktail you have you must have a glass of water. Once you finish a cocktail, your next drink must be a glass of water. This will help you from becoming intoxicated and will keep you from consuming to many calories.

4. Time your drinks and water swap. The combination of the two is the best thing you could do besides not drinking at all. You must swap every other drink with water and you must keep your time limit for the cocktails.

***Alchohol inhibits your athletic performance, so you made need to make your workout a little more subdued the next day. Take a long walk, go swimming or do yoga.

Eating the Buffet Dinner:
1. Start with a salad and a large glass of water. Then it is on to ONE plate of food following serving sizes. Finish with a large glass of water. You will be set.

2. If not already a vegetarian, be pseudo-vegetarian on this day. Start with the salad and then on to all vegetables and fruits. Don't forget to add a serving of turkey but skip the rest of the food. Finish with a large glass of water.

***Start your day after workout with tempo cardio, find a good pace to start and every minute increase your speed until you hit your max speed and do it for an entire minute, finish with a 5-10 minute cool-down. Do a full body weight workout, 15 reps, 1 set with 45 seconds rest between sets.

It is possible to stay on track through the holidays. Make the choice to maintain where you are at through the holidays and then strive to make it a success using these tips and others.

Here a few other easy things you can do to help burn extra calories during the holiday season.
1. When holiday shopping, park the farthest away from the building as you can. You will burn extra calories walking into the mall, while shopping in the mall and then carrying all your packages out of the mall and back across the parking lot.

2. Take the dog for extra walks. Take him for walks after the holiday meals. Try to get others to go with you. Tell them you are starting a new holiday tradition that you all go for a walk together, maybe even sing a carol or two.

3. While holiday shopping or anywhere else that there is an escalator, walk up and down instead of just stand there. Take the stairs if they are an option.

4. Go sledding with the kids. For an extra calorie burn, pull them back up the hill.

5. Go ice skating. An hour of having fun on the ice burns 300-400 calories.

Enjoy the holiday season!